Can You Drive a Car with a Blown Engine

Can You Drive a Car with a Blown Engine? Everything You Need to Know

A blown engine can be a nightmare for car owners since it causes unplanned breakdowns and costly repairs. And this typically results in mechanical failure. Many factors, such as overheating, improper maintenance, or the use of unsuitable oil, can damage an engine.

Given the risks, can you drive a car with a blown engine? No. Driving a car with a blown engine is not safe and should be avoided. It can seriously harm the engine and other car components, leading to unforeseen breakdowns and accidents on the road.

In this article, we’ll discuss the causes and signs of a blown engine and whether driving a car with a blown engine is safe.

Can You Drive A Car With A Blown Engine?

No. Generally speaking, driving a car with a blown engine can be extremely dangerous. In some situations, such as getting the vehicle to a mechanic or a safe location, driving a car with a blown engine for a short distance might be possible. Even so, this should only be done in the direst situations.

Can You Drive a Car with a Blown Engine

According to a survey by the American Automobile Association (AAA), 22% of drivers would keep driving even if their car had engine issues. This highlights the significance of educating people about the dangers of operating a car with a blown engine.

If you suspect a problem with your car, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recommends pulling over to a safe spot and turning off the engine right away. 

This is important in cases with blown engines because continuing to drive the vehicle could result in more damage and raise the chances of a crash.

And trust me when I say that you do not want to be in a car accident. According to a 2019 poll, 2 million drivers involved in car crashes suffer permanent injuries every year.

Can You Drive A Car With A Blown Engine

The best course of action if you suspect that your engine may be blown is to not drive the vehicle and instead have a qualified mechanic examine it. Quick action can help stop further damage and guarantee your safety as well as the safety of other drivers on the road.

Why A Car Engine Blows: 5 Common Causes-

The following are some causes that may cause a car’s engine to blow:

  1. Failure to maintain your car regularly– Lack of regular maintenance can harm your car’s engine by enabling parts like the timing belt, oil filter, and spark plugs to get dirty, or fail. This can result in decreased performance or even a blown engine.
  2. Engine overheating- According to research, overheating is the third most common cause of engine damage. 
Why A Car Engine Blows

When an engine overheats, the metal components expand beyond their design limits, causing them to crack. This might lead to leaks, loss of compression, and engine block damage.

Read:  Can You Drive With A Flat Tire? [A Complete Guide]

In addition, if the engine overheats, the head gasket may break, enabling coolant and oil to mix, causing more harm to the engine and increasing the risks of a blown engine.

  1. Applying poor-quality motor oil- Applying low-quality or the wrong kind of motor oil can cause damage to a car’s engine. That’s because it fails to properly lubricate and regulate the engine temperature. 

In a survey, it was shown that 27% of drivers are unaware of the sort of oil their vehicles need.

  1. The car’s engine seizes- A shortage of oil or coolant, lack of maintenance, and significant stress on the engine might cause it to seize up and eventually fail.
  2. Defect in the timing belt– Timing belts are normally made of rubber, but with time, heat exposure and other environmental factors can cause them to deteriorate.

If the timing belt breaks, the camshaft and crankshaft may become  unsynchronized. This could result in valves colliding with the engine’s pistons and might cause cracked engine blocks, deformed valves, and broken pistons.

You can watch the YouTube video below to learn more about what causes an engine to blow.

What Are The Major Signs Of A Blown Engine?

A blown engine may show an array of symptoms that may point to a significant issue with the engine. Some of the most obvious signs are listed in the table below-

What Are The Major Signs Of A Blown Engine
Difficult to startThis occurs due to a lack of fuel or compression, which could be caused by a blown engine
Smoke from the exhaustIt indicates that coolant or oil is leaking into the engine and being burned, which is a sign of a blown engine
Excess use of fuelThe car may consume more fuel than normal if the engine blows
Loud noises from the engineThis may be due to damaged bearings, connecting rods, or other internal engine components
Loss of powerA blown engine can cause a loss of power due to reduced compression, overheating, and internal damage to engine components

Table: Shows the major signs of a blown engine

What Are The Major Signs Of A Blown Engine

You should have the engine of your car inspected by a professional as soon as you detect any of these symptoms so that the problem can be fixed quickly.

What Are The Dangers Of Driving With A Blown Engine?

Driving a vehicle with a blown engine can result in some of the following risks:

  • Increased probability of accidents- A blown engine can also result in unusual driving behavior, such as abrupt stops or swerving. This raises the possibility of losing control of the vehicle and having an accident on the road.
  • Complete engine failure: Driving with a blown engine might lead to the engine failing completely and the car breaking down in the middle of the road.
  • Expensive car repairs: Driving with a blown engine can significantly damage other car components like the transmission or brakes, leading to even more expensive repairs. In many cases, fixing a blown engine right away is more economical.
What Are The Dangers Of Driving With A Blown Engine

Driving Practices That Can Protect You Against An Engine Blowout-

Read:  Can You Drive A Car With Deployed Airbags - Is It Illegal?

A blown engine can be avoided and your car can function smoothly by following a few driving practices.

  • Drive carefully since rapid acceleration, abrupt stops, and high speeds can all cause additional stress on your engine. According to research, the driver’s poor performance and driving skills are to blame for 11% of car accidents.
  • Check your engine’s coolant and oil levels frequently because low levels might result in major engine issues.
  • Have your car checked out by a mechanic immediately if you hear any unusual noises from the engine or see any white smoke from the exhaust.
What Are The Dangers Of Driving With A Blown Engine
If you’re curious about whether you can drive a car with deployed airbags or a coolant leak, our website has articles on these topics that you may find informative. Our article on driving a car with deployed airbags provides insights into the potential risks and safety concerns associated with operating a vehicle in this condition. It covers important factors to consider and offers guidance on how to handle the situation. Additionally, our article on driving a car with a coolant leak discusses the implications of such a situation and provides recommendations on how to address it. These articles aim to provide valuable information to help you make informed decisions regarding the operation of your vehicle.


The following are some of the commonly asked questions about operating a vehicle with a blown engine:

Q: Is it harmful to the environment to drive a vehicle with a blown engine?

Absolutely, driving with a blown engine can cause dangerous pollutants like carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide to be released into the atmosphere. 

Q: How can I avoid having my car’s engine blow?

To prevent this problem, it’s important to maintain regular oil changes, avoid overheating the engine, inspect and replace any faulty car parts, and have the engine regularly serviced by a qualified mechanic.

Q: Is it possible to fix a blown engine on the side of the road?

No. An effort to fix a blown engine on the side of the road might be risky and futile because it takes specific tools and expertise. It is strongly advised that you take your vehicle to a mechanic if your engine blows.

Final Words

It can be extremely risky and even life-threatening to drive a car with a blown engine. You could endanger yourself, other drivers, and pedestrians if you try to drive a car with a seriously damaged engine. To a large extent, a blown engine can be avoided with routine checks and safe driving practices. 

Additionally, being aware of the symptoms of a blown engine and responding to them quickly helps limit further damage. If you think your car’s engine might be damaged, it’s advisable to get professional help as soon as you can. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *